Filipino care worker dies with Covid-19 after moving to UK for ‘better life’

Tributes have been paid to a “very popular” Filipino care worker after his death with coronavirus.

Ricardo “Ricky” Bonsato, 54, worked at Thornton House care home in Cleveleys, Lancashire, where staff were said to be “deeply affected” by his death.

Mr Bonsato is the latest of at least 26 Filipino health and care workers to have died with coronavirus during the crisis, out of a total of 184 frontline deaths verified by the PA news agency.

A GoFundMe page set up for Mr Bonsato said he was a “loving husband” and “caring father” to his two children.

According to the fundraising page, Mr Bonsato was born and raised in Sison in the south-east Asian country, but had moved to the UK with his family “to better their lives”.

Coronavirus – Sun May 17, 2020
Antonio Lagdameo, Philippines ambassador to the UK (Philippines Embassy UK/PA)

Earlier this month, the Philippines’ ambassador to the UK called for key workers to be “properly protected” after it was claimed Filipinos had the highest death rate of staff across the NHS and care services.

Chris Bagshaw, head of Lancashire County Council’s Older People’s services, said: “Our thoughts are with Ricky’s family and friends at this really sad time. He will be very much missed by everyone at Thornton House.

“Ricky was a kind and compassionate person, with a wonderful sense of humour. He was very popular with both residents and his colleagues and could be relied on to always say something to put a smile on your face.

“He worked at Thornton House for just over two years and was excellent at his job. Professionally he was a real asset to the team. His death has deeply affected everyone at the home.”

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